Students, community, get a closer look at the moon during event

Trey Crumbie

A small, dedicated group of people ventured their way to Hardin Planetarium on Saturday night to get a closer than usual view of the moon as part of the International Observe the Moon Night.

The International Observe the Moon Night is an annual event dedicated to observing and celebrating the Moon according to the night’s official website. The event was hosted and facilitated by the Hilltopper Astronomy Club.

David Laney, observatory education scientist, said the event is a widespread occurrence.

“It’s happening in hundreds of places around the world involving millions of people,” Laney said.

As people trickled into the planetarium before the event started, they were greeted to ‘moon music’; various songs that mentioned or were about the moon.

The event started at 7 p.m. with a short presentation on the moon prepared by Laney. The presentation contained various facts about the moon, including the phases of the moon, the origin of the moon, and how craters on the moon are formed.

Laney said the moon is unique and strange because of its size.

“It’s far larger compared to the planet it goes around than any other moon in the Solar System,” Laney said.

The presentation concluded with a virtual tour of the moon.

Following the presentation, the audience had the option to watch a “Wallace and Gromit” cartoon about the moon or walk outside of the planetarium to view the moon through a telescope. In addition to this, attendees had the option to use a more powerful telescope located on the roof of Thompson Complex Central Wing.

Woodburn junior Rebecca Davis said she came to the event after a friend told her about it.

“I thought it would be interesting due to the fact that I’ve never seen the actual the moon through a telescope,” Davis said.

Davis said she learned a lot and was glad she came.

Bowling Green senior Kolton Jones, a member of the Hilltopper Astronomy Club, said the event was held for many different reasons.

“The objective was to engage the audience in a little bit of astronomy so they can get their feet wet,” Jones said. “As well as just trying to get people interested in the hobby.”